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Five observations from the North Texas spring game


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Quick Hits: Five observations from the football spring game

Reece Waddell | Senior Staff Writer

@ReeceWaddell15

On Saturday, April 23, the North Texas football team took the field for its annual spring game. Here are five observations from the contest.

New quarterbacks show improvement

Graduate quarterback Alec Morris showed his value in his first appearance at Apogee Stadium, proving he is a clear upgrade from anyone the Mean Green lined up under center in 2015. Morris made the most of his staunch 6-3, 233-pound frame and was not afraid to stand in the pocket and find the open man. His arm strength, while not elite, is good enough to get the job done. Morris was not fazed when his number was called to throw the ball downfield, and had only one hiccup on the day, an interception that came when he airmailed a pass to the opposite side of the field.

Junior Quinn Shanbour also had a nice game and looked comfortable making the most of the throws in the offense’s arsenal. The highlight of his day was a 30-yard missile over the middle of the field that sailed behind the defensive back’s helmet and right into the receiver’s hands for a touchdown.

Here's the link to the full write up: http://ntdaily.com/quick-hits-five-observations-from-the-football-spring-game/

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I agree, just would add the obvious that it's hard to judge from the spring game. Offensive line could just look bad because d-line is so good or vise-versa. Secondary may be better than they appeared because QBs have more time and less pressure than in real games, etc.. One thing is for sure, the play calling is much improved on offense. We expected that though. 

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I gotta say, I'm 2 drives in on the Spring game, 1 for Morris and 1 for Shanbour. and I'm having nightmarish Todd Dodge flashbacks. The swing passes to the pick blocks are straight out of Dodge's playbook. Scares the hell out of me. Regardless of size and competition,  Shanbour looks like the smoothest qb out there. I feel like I'm watching Tune(Morris) and Riley(Shanbour) duel it out in a Todge offense. Tune had the size but Riley was just more natural in the system. I hope to God that our defense reverts back to a pre-Cosh level of play or we are in for an asswhip of a season. I hate to rain on the parade of a new coach but this is bringing back really bad memories. If this is how the offense is going to run, just put Shanbour in until the stretcher comes for him and then bring in Morris. Maybe we'll be lucky enough to beat a Ball State again and take an Ohio to double OT. Welcome back to 2009.

Edited by Cr1028
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7 minutes ago, Cr1028 said:

I gotta say, I'm 2 drives in on the Spring game, 1 for Morris and 1 for Shanbour. I gotta say, I'm having nightmarish Todd Dodge flashbacks. The swing passes to the pick blocks are straight out of Dodge's playbook. Scares the hell out of me. Regardless of size and competition,  Shanbour looks like the smoothest qb out there. I feel like I'm watching Tune(Morris) and Riley(Shanbour) duel it out in a Todge offense. Tune had the size but Riley was just more natural in the system. I hope to God that our defense reverts back to a pre-Cosh level of play or we are in for an asswhip of a season. I hate to rain on the parade of a new coach but this is bringing back really bad memories. If this is how the offense is going to run, just put Shanbour in until the stretcher comes for him and then bring in Morris. Maybe we'll be lucky enough to beat a Ball State again and take an Ohio to double OT. Welcome back to 2009.

Watching the first couple series reminded me of the exact same. 

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This was my first time to see the new look team, since I no longer live in the Denton area, and I have to say, we still have some improving to do. My thoughts....

1. I cringe at the sight of bubble screens. Lets not turn into Dodge-ball 2.0

2. I would have liked to see some shuttle passes mixed into the offense. I think Ivery would be a great weapon catching a shuttle pass.

3. Shanbour looked at least as good as Morris, but had the luxury of playing against the second team defense.

4. Goree is going to be a star!

To be honest, it's still early and this team isn't ready for the season, and we shouldn't expect them to. If we still look like this at the end of fall camp then I'll be concerned. It was an enjoyable day at Apogee.

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11 minutes ago, Side Show Joe said:

 

3. Shanbour looked at least as good as Morris, but had the luxury of playing against the second team defense.

He also only had the 2nd team O to work with. So I would call that a push. The kid looked good. I am quite shocked that we had this kid sitting the pine all last season. 

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Just now, NeonGreen said:

He also only had the 2nd team O to work with. So I would call that a push. The kid looked good. I am quite shocked that we had this kid sitting the pine all last season. 

I think he was injured last season.

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13 minutes ago, UNTLifer said:

You all act shocked that the Air Raid is so similar to what Dodge ran.  What did you expect?

I get that, but it was the feel of it really more than the look. It was as if when the run game was getting stuffed (as it did all day) and the intermediate game wasn't clicking it was as if the guy calling the plays (whoever that was today) crawled into his shell and went with his comfort zone of left and right bubbles. They diverted away from it about 40 minutes into it, but for a bit there I was just "uhhhh." 

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1 hour ago, Side Show Joe said:

I think he was injured last season.

But 5th on the depth chart before any injury occurred.

Don't buy revisionist history.

1 hour ago, UNTLifer said:

You all act shocked that the Air Raid is so similar to what Dodge ran.  What did you expect?

Well, considering Littrell ran the ball as much as he passed the ball at NC, how about a balanced offense?

Maybe he is comfortable with his running game (shouldn't be with a new blocking scheme), and maybe he is trying to evaluate QBs (although if this were the case more than one QB would have got time with gre first team), but Wilson getting less than 10 touches is concerning and probably why this looked like Dodge 2.0.

This will continue to be a legitimate concern until the SMU game lets us know one way or the other, no matter how much certain fans want to suck their head in the sand and ignore it.

Edited by UNT90
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3 minutes ago, UNT90 said:

But 5th on the depth chart before any injury occurred.

Don't buy revisionist history.

This. With the old staff Trevor Moore would have went in at QB before Quinn. Playing Quinn would have meant claiming fault for the CFB World to see. Dan McCarney is never wrong according to Dan McCarney. Dan McCarney would have never had that. 

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27 minutes ago, UNT90 said:
Quote

I think he was injured last season.

 

But 5th on the depth chart before any injury occurred.

Don't buy revisionist history.

 

....and he was assessed by the same coach that thought Greer was good enough to play D-1 ball.

 

OK, this isn't "revisionist history". This is the third spring that he has been on campus. I know that because I first saw him in spring practice 2014. I was very stuck by his  potential passing ability. Last spring I visited with two gentlemen who identified themselves as "volunteer coaches". They  were watching warm up exercises for the QB's (as was I ) and doing charts on all the QB's. I commented to them that I was impressed with Shanbours throwing ability....especially his release. One of the "volunteer coaches" said that in addition to his ability as a passer, he was also the smartest of the QB's. This is when I said, well why wasn't he out there playing last year? One of the "coaches" said that he has been battling a bad case of "turf toe", but he should be over it by now (spring of 2015). He was still not given an opportunity to run any of the groups until the very end of the spring session. He got into the very last of last years spring game and drove the 3 or 4th team down for a TD. It wasn't a spectacular performance, but considering the total lack of "reps" he was given up to that point, he looked pretty good.....and better than Greer. Still the fall of 2015 came and the story was still the same. No reps in practice and no opportunity to show if he could get the job done in "real time". BUT he has always been good enough to train any new QB who shows up. 

So the Thursday that practice was moved to the evening because of the funeral of one of the player's father I went to the practice facility to watch practice but there wasn't one going on. Two players walked up and I asked them if there would be a practice and one of them was Shanbour. I asked him if he was over his turf toe and he said that he was. I made a comment that I didn't realize it was such a serious condition, and he said it was very serious. He said, in fact, that that was the main reason why he had to leave Oklahoma State and transfer.

So he was once at Okie St., but probably as a walk-on. He was 5th on the depth chart partially because of turf toe, but also because obviously SOMEONE on the previous coaching staff can't properly assess QB candidates. 

 

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1 hour ago, UNT90 said:

But 5th on the depth chart before any injury occurred.

Don't buy revisionist history.

Well, considering Littrell ran the ball as much as he passed the ball at NC, how about a balanced offense?

Maybe he is comfortable with his running game (shouldn't be with a new blocking scheme), and maybe he is trying to evaluate QBs (although if this were the case more than one QB would have got time with gre first team), but Wilson getting less than 10 touches is concerning and probably why this looked like Dodge 2.0.

This will continue to be a legitimate concern until the SMU game lets us know one way or the other, no matter how much certain fans want to suck their head in the sand and ignore it.

You know, this was a pretty good post, but you just can't comment without taking a shot at other fans.  You might try that approach and see if your message isn't better received.  Again, this is Leach's Air Raid with Littrell's twists added in, plus, as others mentioned, this is a scrimmage so we are working on areas that need improvement.

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40 minutes ago, SilverEagle said:

....and he was assessed by the same coach that thought Greer was good enough to play D-1 ball.

 

OK, this isn't "revisionist history". This is the third spring that he has been on campus. I know that because I first saw him in spring practice 2014. I was very stuck by his  potential passing ability. Last spring I visited with two gentlemen who identified themselves as "volunteer coaches". They  were watching warm up exercises for the QB's (as was I ) and doing charts on all the QB's. I commented to them that I was impressed with Shanbours throwing ability....especially his release. One of the "volunteer coaches" said that in addition to his ability as a passer, he was also the smartest of the QB's. This is when I said, well why wasn't he out there playing last year? One of the "coaches" said that he has been battling a bad case of "turf toe", but he should be over it by now (spring of 2015). He was still not given an opportunity to run any of the groups until the very end of the spring session. He got into the very last of last years spring game and drove the 3 or 4th team down for a TD. It wasn't a spectacular performance, but considering the total lack of "reps" he was given up to that point, he looked pretty good.....and better than Greer. Still the fall of 2015 came and the story was still the same. No reps in practice and no opportunity to show if he could get the job done in "real time". BUT he has always been good enough to train any new QB who shows up. 

So the Thursday that practice was moved to the evening because of the funeral of one of the player's father I went to the practice facility to watch practice but there wasn't one going on. Two players walked up and I asked them if there would be a practice and one of them was Shanbour. I asked him if he was over his turf toe and he said that he was. I made a comment that I didn't realize it was such a serious condition, and he said it was very serious. He said, in fact, that that was the main reason why he had to leave Oklahoma State and transfer.

So he was once at Okie St., but probably as a walk-on. He was 5th on the depth chart partially because of turf toe, but also because obviously SOMEONE on the previous coaching staff can't properly assess QB candidates. 

 

Right, the revisionist history of which I speak is pretending turf toe kept him from competing for the job last year. 

That was a coaching decision. 

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12 minutes ago, ChristopherRyanWilkes said:

Yes, just like Todd Dodge, except one has actually successfully ran his offense at a college level. I knew the Dodge comparisons were going to come, but this soon? 

Dodge's offense was pretty successful, it was defense that killed him.

Lets hope Littrell hiring living breathing college coaches with experience to coach the defense will keep this from looking like Dodge 2.0.

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4 hours ago, Side Show Joe said:

1. I cringe at the sight of bubble screens. Lets not turn into Dodge-ball 2.0

Better then McCarney 2.0 coming out of 2015. I think 90 has a good point with saying that Dodge's staff didn't have the experience needed to be successful. I don't think we will see a amazing year in 2016, but I think that this staff can definitely use their experience from TTech, Packers, Wash St, NC to run a more smoother running machine to limp along until a more structured 2017-2018. I don't think we can fully get the big picture from a scrimmage either. But I will admit that I was a little disappointed with Morris. Maybe a little more practice will show improvement?

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Just now, UNT90 said:

Dodge's offense was pretty successful, it was defense that killed him.

Lets hope Littrell hiring living breathing college coaches with experience to coach the defense will keep this from looking like Dodge 2.0.

That is a fact. If Littrell brings us a successful Dodge/Vizza type of offense next year I will be happy, because I very much doubt that we will see the high school caliber defense/special teams units that we saw under TD. It could be a fun season if we can pull off our first two games. Looking forward to it.

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2 hours ago, UNT90 said:

Dodge's offense was pretty successful, it was defense that killed him.

Lets hope Littrell hiring living breathing college coaches with experience to coach the defense will keep this from looking like Dodge 2.0.

Folks don't buy revisionist history.

Dodge's offense sucked. It was kind of fun to watch at times and moved the ball around a lot between the 20s. But those offenses did NOT score points. And points are the only measure of success for an offense. Everyone remembers the Navy game and equates it with the whole 4 years of offense. Not true.

Year          Rank          Pts/G

2007           79               24.8

2008          103              20.0

2009           67               26.1

2010           85               23.9

 

That is a 4 year average of 23.7. Sorry that is not a success. Well, it has to be good compared to the awful, boring offense of McCarney, right?

For comparison, including last year's 15 pts/g average, Buick 2.0 Coach Mac had a 5 year average of 23.9. So actually, Dodge was worse.

Raise your standards 90!!!  Stop accepting mediocrity!!!1!!!!!1

 

 

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